Infuse Your Booze! Don't let the gift-giving season catch you unawares; whip up a big batch of homemade liqueur this week and all you'll have to do is wait. Some of my tried-and-true favorites under the fold. [more inside]
Love strawberries? Try these six tasty strawberry cocktails from Chicago bartenders. Looking for something a little less fruity with a little more history? How about five essential Southern cocktails?
Neither option appeal to you? Maybe you missed this previous summer cocktail post?
Neither option appeal to you? Maybe you missed this previous summer cocktail post?
While Prohibition may have withered the American drinker’s palate and understanding & sent the most talented drink-slingers into exile, cocktails are back, and better than ever! And who are the people that have brought the all-but-dead art of America’s contribution to world drinks culture (and the profession & craft of the Bartender) back to stunning, exuberant life? Hey Bartender! [more inside]
This is a collection of Francisco "Puree Tomatoes" Taccir's blog posts from Myspace and Friendster from 2005 – 2010. Tomatoes was a writer, artist, and addict who was born on February 26. 1977. He died on October 10, 2010 from a heroin overdose. [more inside]
Three bartenders in a backyard teach you how to make three classic summer drinks on a budget: the daiquiri, the gin & tonic, and the mint julep. Not simple enough? How about the only summer cocktail recipe you will ever need?
This indignant map exposes the seamy underbelly of 1890s Washington, D.C., naming and locating “saloons” and “bawdy-houses” in the so-called Murder Bay neighborhood, located east of the White House. The Library of Congress, which holds the map, tells us that it’s a newspaper clipping from the 1890s, without a known author or publisher. (Slate.com)
I realize that it is only Monday. I also realize that it is still very much Winter in much of the Northern Hemisphere. But I also realized today that the word "Poptails" has never before been mentioned on the Blue. Time to change that: Booze + Popsicle Recipe = POPTAILS ! What's your poison? Dirty Pirate Popsicles, Corona Beer Popsicles, Three Musketeers Poptail, Bourbon Butterscotch Latte Popsicles & more, much more. Or just invent your own. (Keep in mind that if you use too much alcohol it won't freeze. (Worst case scenario: SLUSHIE!) Just how much alcohol to use for a poptail.
The BMJ analysis of 007's alcohol consumption.
What should you drink? Take your cues from the tunes. That's the premise behind Drinkify, a scrappy little webapp that recommends drinks based on what you're listening to. Their motto? "Never listen to music alone again." [more inside]
Before his death, Mickey Mantle spoke to Sports Illustrated about the effect that alcoholism had on his life and career. [more inside]
He drinks a whisky drink, He drinks a vodka drink, He drinks a lager drink, He pays a fortune for the privilege...
The House of Commons Health Committee recommends (report) that England should introduce a minimum price for alcohol. Unsurprisingly, the British Medical Association agrees, saying that the country needs "minimum pricing, higher taxation, reduced availability, improved regulation and better treatment for patients who have alcohol addiction problems" while the alcohol industry does not." So, what is the worth of a pint? [more inside]
It's no secret that classic cocktails are back. Fresh fruit and house-made bitters and infusions are de rigueur, but no less important is the quality of the ice. Good ice and the right shake ensure that spirits are properly chilled and diluted and improve the cocktail's flavor profile.
How to make the worst White Russian ever. That's what you get for asking for cocktail at some super square looking business hotel adjacent to an exhibition center. Ok, ok, here's how to make a nice one. Ooh it looks like Jupiter. Try one hot. Teeny tiny Kahlua drinks. Do NOT cook pork in it. Oh, okay, go ahead. Make you own kahlua. It won't be as pretty as this. While we're adding coffee to booze why not add booze to coffee.
[Joe] Namath learned to drink as a youngster, back home in Beaver Falls. You could say he developed a taste for hooch as an infant— when he got fussy while teething his mother rubbed his gums with a rag soaked in grain alcohol. (via SpoFi, another story of a great athlete/drunkard)
Pocketshot. For when you really need to slug some rum on a long bike ride.
How Not To Get Drunk is a newish blog that takes a quasi-scientific approach to the fine art of imbibing without embarassment. Maybe Ben Affleck (YouTube) should take some lessons.
Black Vodka. Perfect for Halloween! (A separate search yielded direct links to mixing and drink tips.) The coloring is from the Indian/Burmese catechu, a wood extract, but it won't stain. After doing a little research, it seems UK company Blavod merged with US Extreme Beverages, maker of Red Bull. So... is it a novelty, or niche filler? Reviews seem pretty favorable. I'll be picking up a botle for my Halloween party.
Speaking Of weight loss and exercise... Those who like their booze also like their nicotine. People who drink to excess also tend to be chronic smokers, and a new report suggests the combination of the two might prove more toxic than either one alone. a small study found chronic smoking + alcohol dependence = increased severity of brain damage. The frontal lobes (short-term storage sites) turn out to be the most damaged. A separate study used rats to show that alcoholism and excessive food intake may share the same chemical pathways in the brain. Forbes has the HealthDayNews report that focuses mainly on the smokes, MSNBC looks more at the eats. They also have an interesting Addictions Sections. Could it be that some folks are just prone to addictions and everyone settles on something different?
"Whadyawant, motherf*ck?" These are the first words Charles Bukowski speaks in John Dullaghan's documentary about the poet and novelist, famous for his writing and infamous for his drinking and brawling and screwing. The audience member might respond, "To hear your story, Hank, that's what I want." The movie opens with friends (Sean Penn, Harry Dean Stanton, Bono) and colleagues and lovers and fans recounting the myth; theirs are stories of blades pulled on the maitre d' of the swanky Polo Lounge in Beverly Hills, of dangling dicks revealed in public, of a drunk who'd just as soon crack his bottle over your head than share its contents. (more inside)
Scotland shamed: Japan wins whisky challenge. The Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre hosted a tasting in Toronto, and a 20-year-old Nikka Yoichi, distilled in Hokkaido, beat out a 16-year-old Lagavulin (my own favorite) and 12-year-old whiskies from Cragganmore and Balvenie (also excellent). This is reminiscent of the 1976 tasting in which California wines beat out French ones and put California on the map; can America someday produce a world-class scotch-type whisky (the preferred spelling in Scotland), or shall we simply continue to take pride in our bourbon and rye?
Poor, Much-Maligned Alcohol Gets A Good Word: It's quarter to three, there's no one in the place/Except you and me,/So set 'em' up Joe, I got a little story/ I think you should know... And the story is something, if you're a drinker, you probably already know. (I was so surprised by this article I wondered if it was sponsored by the booze industry. But then I mixed myself another drink; read the wonderfully-named, probably Guinness - and poteen-fuelled - Dublin Principles and drank its health anyway!)
You've Come A Long Way, Baby: Unfortunately, you picked the wrong one, dear old Old-Fashioned, dean of cocktails. Robert Hess's definitive essay on the ever-changing ways of making one shows just how contentious a cocktail recipe can be. It also bears sad testimony to how the great classics are being fruited up, iced up, fizzed up, shaken till obliteration and generally girlied, dumbed and boozed down. So how do you stand on the cherry, the pineapple and the orange? And don't even bother commenting if you're a seltzer fan! ;)
Finally, a holiday we can all get behind. Saturday, November 2 is the American Homebrewers Association’s 4th Annual Teach a Friend to Homebrew Day. Find a location near you to help you create the nectar of the gods. "To alcohol! The cause of – and solution to – all of life’s problems."